Above image shows Indonesian police harassing and hosing down three trans women in Sumatra in 2018
Horrifying crime is the latest in a spate of anti-LGBT violence over recent years.
Amnesty International is calling on the Indonesian authorities urgently to investigate the murder of a trans woman, Mira, who was accused of theft before being burned alive in Jakarta, Indonesia’s capital, yesterday (6th April).
Two of the alleged perpetrators are in custody with the other three remaining on the run. The Indonesian authorities frequently use violence and intimidation against LGBT people, casting doubt on their willingness to undertake a thorough investigation.
On 10 January 2020, the Mayor of Depok, Mohammad Idris, asked authorities including the municipal police (Satpol PP) to sweep rented residencies (including rented houses, apartments, and dorms), in order to stop what he called ‘immoral’ acts. He labelled his campaign a “prevention toward the spread of LGBTI” in his city.
On 27th January 2018, police raided beauty salons where several trans people worked. Individuals assumed to be trans women by the North Aceh Police Force were arbitrarily arrested, humiliated and tortured. Although released without charge the next day, the individuals remain deeply traumatised, with some having lost their jobs and others being forced to flee due to concerns for their safety.
Ten women accused of same-sex relations after one of them posted a photo of her kissing and hugging another woman on Facebook were arrested in 2018 in Padang, West Sumatra.
Usman Ham, Amnesty International Indonesia’s Executive Director, said:
“This despicable murder must be investigated urgently. It would not be the first time that LGBTI people in Indonesia have been violently targeted simply for who they are.
“Without prompt action from the authorities to cast light on this horrifying crime and bring perpetrators to justice, transgender people in Indonesia will feel even further neglected and vilified by their government.
“The authorities must also take this appalling murder as a wake-up call and repeal its laws that criminalise specific gender identities.”